This weekend Mother Nature graced us with 20-plus inches of snow, blanketing the slopes and The Valley floor alike. It was the first major snowstorm of the winter and for those not working in the ski industry, it offered something remarkable - a reason to stay home. Staying home in a blizzard feels normal.

When the power went out for many folks on Sunday and it was impossible to do laundry or other weekend chores – sitting around reading a book (or shoveling the snow) felt normal.

Normal means so many things to many of us. For starters, it means life before the pandemic. If you’re snowed in and/or out of power you can’t go out and encounter other people by grocery shopping – for example – because the power was out. You could forget about the virus for a brief bit.

Vaccines are being distributed and given, not as fast as we’d hoped, but they’re happening. Next week, those over 75 can register to get one. If you know someone over 75 who is not super computer savvy, please help them register online to avoid potentially overwhelmed state phone systems.

Beyond the pandemic and the beauty of a snowstorm that caused many to slow down or stop, the peaceful transfer of power in Washington, DC, this week marks the biggest return to normalcy possible. Recognizing that not all Americans voted for President Biden, it’s still a relief not to fear what will happen next in terms of norm-busting presidents.

It’s a relief knowing that that horrific incitement to insurrection caused by the former president won’t happen under our new president (and probably never again). It’s a relief to enjoy not having former President Donald Trump oversharing all the time on social media. It’s a huge relief to even write the words former President Trump.

The transfer of power happened safely and securely despite threats and conspiracy theories (did you hear about the 500,000 Chinese soldiers massed on the Canadian and Mexican borders poised to begin invading at noon today when President Biden was to have been arrested?).

We have a new president and new vice-president and no new blood was shed in the process. All hail the chief, but all hail normalcy. Let’s hope it returns in 2021.